Twenty Dollars and Change: Harriet Tubman and the Ongoing Fight for Racial Justice and Democracy

Join us on the evening before Harriet Tubman Day for a discussion and book signing with author Dr. Clarence Lusane and his new book Twenty Dollars and Change. Discussion will be moderated by William E. Berry Jr., CEO and publisher of the literary and visual arts journal aaduna and immediate past chair of the Harriet Tubman Center for Justice and Peace.

Twenty Dollars and Change places Harriet Tubman’s life and legacy in a long tradition of resistance, illuminating the ongoing struggle to realize a democracy in which her emancipatory vision prevails.

America is in the throes of a historic reckoning with racism, with the battle for control over official narratives at ground zero. Across the country, politicians, city councils, and school boards are engaged in a highly polarized debate about whose accomplishments should be recognized, and whose point of view should be included in the telling of America’s history.

In Twenty Dollars and Change, political scientist Clarence Lusane, author of the acclaimed The Black History of the White House, writes from a basic premise: Racist historical narratives and pervasive social inequities are inextricably linked–changing one can transform the other. Taking up the debate over the future of the twenty-dollar bill, Lusane uses the question of Harriet Tubman vs. Andrew Jackson as a lens through which to view the current state of our nation’s ongoing reckoning with the legacies of slavery and foundational white supremacy. He places the struggle to confront unjust social conditions in direct connection with the push to transform our public symbols, making it plain that any choice of whose life deserves to be remembered and honored is a direct reflection of whose basic rights are deemed worthy of protection, and whose are not.

Purchase the book here: https://citylights.com/…/20-dollars-change-harriet…/

Dr. Clarence Lusane is an author, activist, scholar, and journalist. He is a Professor and former Chairman of Howard University’s Department of Political Science. Lusane earned his B.A. in Communications from Wayne State University and both his Masters and Ph.D. from Howard University in Political Science. He’s been a political consultant to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and a former Commissioner for the DC Commission on African American Affairs. He frequently appears on MSNBC and CSPAN, and was invited by the Obama’s to speak at the White House. Author of many books, including The Black History of the White House, Lusane lives and works in the Washington, D.C. area.


William E. Berry, Jr. known readily as Bill Berry is originally from the Bronx and came to Auburn in 1997 to serve as the Dean for Strategic Planning and Institutional Initiatives at Cayuga Community College. Mr. Berry’s career as a higher education administrator spanned four decades with appointments at the senior executive level. He served at SUNY, CUNY, Malcolm-King College in Harlem, Antioch University, and several other campuses; taught at the graduate and undergraduate level; presented at numerous national conferences and is a consultant on a variety of educational issues. The immediate past board chair of the Harriet Tubman Center for Justice and Peace, Inc., Bill served that organization for 25 years as a member and executive leader. Currently, he serves on the board of the United Way of Cayuga County; is a member of the Healing Cayuga Steering Committee; founding member of the Cayuga County Sheriff Office’s Community Collaborative Advisement Committee; and serves as the Auburn school district’s consultant for its diversity, equity, and inclusion strategic plan. Bill is the publisher of the online literary and visual arts journal, aaduna and occasionally writes opinion pieces for The Citizen. He considers himself to be an activist scholar and progressive social justice advocate. In 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul appointed Bill to serve on the New York State African-American History Commission that will explore and celebrate 400 years of Black history in New York State. Mr. Berry is one of 15 members chosen state-wide.


Mar 09 2023


7:00 pm

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Carriage House Theater
Carriage House Theater
203 Genesee Street


NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center
NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center
+1 (315) 258-9820

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